Special Report

The Worst Christmas Movies of All Time

What if Christmas was funny? Or scary? Or cooky? Holiday movies ask these basic questions without diving much deeper. Some films never had a shot at being good while others seemingly had interesting ideas but very poor execution.

Many were rated poorly with critics and audiences but still did well at the box office. People get excited for the holiday season and it is a great time to go to a theater or watch something at home, and as long as people keep watching, they’ll keep making bad Christmas movies of all varieties.

To determine the worst Christmas movies of all time, 24/7 Tempo developed an index using average ratings on IMDb and a combination of audience scores and Tomatometer scores on Rotten Tomatoes. All ratings were weighted equally.

There are many classic Christmas movies, including “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and “A Christmas Story.” However, there are many that are either so bland or so bad that they hurt to watch. For the most part, they follow a few recurring themes like a dysfunctional family brought together for the holidays, being sad and alone during the holidays, or trying to get the right gift for children.

Holiday movies may be a good way to reflect on our own relationships and lives but these movies aren’t going to be the most enjoyable way to do it. For more enjoyable ways to experience the holidays on the big screen — these are the best Christmas movies of all time.

Many Christmas movies are great for the entire family. They have entertaining plots and endearing characters while focusing on things that people of all ages can appreciate.

The list below includes some sad attempts at family Christmas magic along with the occasional Christmas horror slashers, psychological thrillers, and very cheap Christmas editions of otherwise already mediocre franchises. (On the other hand, these are the best movie franchises to marathon from home.)

Click here for the 40 worst Christmas movies of all time

Methodology

To determine the worst Christmas movies of all time, 24/7 Tempo developed an index using average ratings on IMDb, an online movie database owned by Amazon, and a combination of audience scores and Tomatometer scores on Rotten Tomatoes, an online movie and TV review aggregator, as of November 2021. All ratings were weighted equally. Only movies with at least 5,000 audience votes on either IMDb or Rotten Tomatoes were considered. Only films in which the Christmas season plays an important role in the plot, or were otherwise identified as Christmas movies by Box Office Mojo, the Countdown Until Christmas Christmas movie database, and Vulture magazine were considered. Information on directorial credits comes from IMDb.